May 30, 2024

Back to state! Lady Beavers hold off Norton

Colby, Kan. (westernkansasnews.com)–There’s a superstition that goes “Find a penny pick it up; all day long you’ll have good luck.” Last year, the Scott City Lady Beavers found a penny come off a basketball goal during shoot around. They’re luck led them to the Class 4A, Division II State Tournament. About an hour before tipoff, one of the Lady Beavers found a penny at her seat before getting ready for their second straight sub-state championship. This year, it’s another trip to state. This time to the Class 3A State Tournament in Hutchinson on Thursday. Scott City led wire to wire, and held off the Norton Lady Bluejays 41-34 Saturday night at the Colby Community Building.

The Lady Beavers couldn’t have asked for any better start, leading 7-0 just 61 seconds into the game. Norton was resilient, and never allowed Scott City to go on a big run until the second half. The Lady Bluejays would score five straight to pull to within 13-11 with 2:41 remaining in the first quarter. A Lady Beaver basket late in the opening period gave them a 15-11 lead after the first quarter. Neither team could hardly score at all in the second quarter. Both teams score four points, as Scott City took a 19-15 halftime lead. Norton did not score for the final 5:14 of the period, and the Lady Beavers were scoreless for the final 4:46 of the half.

Norton (13-10) would get to within two early in the third period, before Kaitlyn Roberts would connect on a three to put the Lady Beavers up 22-17 one minute into the second half. The Lady Bluejays would go on a 6-2 run over the next four minutes, and pull to within 24-23 with 2:31 left in the third quarter. Scott City (19-4) closed out the third period on a 7-3 run to take a 31-26 lead into the fourth quarter. In the final period, the Lady Beavers would turn to their defense to come up with big stops. Their defense would turn into offense, as they started the period on an 8-2 run to have their largest lead of the night at 39-28 with 3:44 left on a pair of Bailey Latta free throws. Scott City put it away for good with a pair of Macie Price free throws to go up 41-31 with 17.2 seconds left. Norton added a three-point play to close out the scoring to make the final 41-34.

Macie Price led Scott City with 13 points, while Emily Weathers added 10. The Lady Beavers finished 7-12 from the foul line and had 15 turnovers. Norton was led by Tessa Hauser with 17 points off the bench. The Lady Bluejays were 5-8 at the free throw line and finished with 16 turnovers. Scott City won the rebounding battle 22-21.

From 1973-2016 the Scott City Lady Beavers were never a part of the state tournament scene. They have qualified for state for a second consecutive year, and their first 3A tournament appearance is ahead of them. It was the first meeting between Scott City and Norton since 1987, when the Lady Beavers won 50-41 in the Class 4A Sub-State semi-final in Goodland. The 19th win for Scott City was the third time in the last 38 years they have hit that mark, and the first since the 1994-95 season when they finished 19-3. The Lady Beavers wrapped up an impressive run in Colby this year, winning the Orange & Black Classic in January and then the sub-state tournament to go along with their regular season win over Colby.

Scott City is projected to be as high as a five seed. State Qualifiers included Garden Plain (21-1), Nemaha Central (21-2), TMP-Marian (20-2), Haven (19-3), Wellsville (18-4), Royal Valley (15-7) and Caney Valley (13-10).  Brackets will be released by KSHSAA Sunday morning.

Coach Sarah McCormick Postgame